- The Washington Times - Wednesday, November 1, 2006

Baldwin bails on film

Actor Alec Baldwin wants to be removed as narrator of an Arnold Schwarzenegger documentary called “Running With Arnold.” He says filmmakers went too far by including images of Nazi rallies.

According to Associated Press, Mr. Baldwin wrote in a posting on the Huffington Post Web site that he agreed to narrate the documentary about the actor-turned-governor’s political rise based on a reading of the script. He said that when he saw the film as he recorded the tracks, he was “somewhat dismayed by some of the images.”

“The filmmakers hammer Schwarzenegger over his private behavior and his record as governor,” Mr. Baldwin wrote, noting that he is not a supporter of the governor, “but Schwarzenegger deserves to be treated fairly, and the film’s images of Nazi rallies were over the line.”

The governor’s office declined comment. Mr. Baldwin, who could not be reached for comment Monday, also wrote that he asked that his voice be removed and said he returned payment. He also had his attorney issue a cease-and-desist demand against the filmmakers.

Producer Mike Gabrawy said Mr. Baldwin had the script for more than a month and that they tried several times to set up screenings with the actor, even delaying recording the narration to accommodate him.

The film includes a photograph of former Austrian President Kurt Waldheim, who was invited to Mr. Schwarzenegger’s wedding but did not attend. In the photo, Mr. Waldheim is dressed in his World War II Wehrmacht uniform. In 1987, Mr. Waldheim was barred from entering the United States following an investigation into his activities as a lieutenant in a German unit associated with Nazi atrocities. Mr. Waldheim insisted he was innocent.

Another image in the documentary shows the Nazi party paperwork of Mr. Schwarzenegger’s father, Mr. Gabrawy said. Other images of the Third Reich have been replaced.

Prince: ‘I go to Rio’

Prince will open a nightclub at the Rio hotel in Las Vegas, which will host concerts by the artist as well as acts signed to his NPG label, Billboard.com reports.

Concerts West/AEG Live, producers of Prince’s $90 million Musicology tour in 2004, will be working with the artist on the project, which will begin next month, Billboard said. It is unknown how regularly Prince plans to perform at the venue formerly known as Club Rio, which has hosted a topless revue called Club Eroticka since February 2005.

Prince has been off the road this year, but on Tuesday, he released new music on the “Happy Feet” soundtrack. His “Song of the Heart” was written specifically for the film (opening Nov. 17), which boasts the vocal talents of Elijah Wood, Nicole Kidman, Hugh Jackman and Robin Williams.

New Kubrick film a go

The son-in-law of Stanley Kubrick is shepherding a film treatment titled “Lunatic at Large” to the screen after discovering it among the late director’s storage trunks, Contactmusic.com reports, citing a story published Tuesday in the New York Times.

According to the newspaper, Mr. Kubrick had commissioned the treatment from noir pulp novelist Jim Thompson in the 1950s, but it had become lost until the son-in-law, Philip Hobbs, discovered it after the filmmaker’s death in 1999. “I knew what it was right away because I remember Stanley talking about ‘Lunatic’,” Mr. Hobbs told the Times. “He was always saying he wished he knew where it was because it was such a great idea.”

Veteran producer Edward R. Pressman (“Phantom of the Paradise,” “Conan the Barbarian,” “Wall Street”) and London media company Finch & Partners were expected to announce that the film will be helmed by British TV director Chris Palmer from a finished script by Stephen R. Clarke.

Compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from Web and wire reports.

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